We elect young, fun volunteers with tons of energy to run around with teens. Parents drive and prep the snacks. Youth takes place on a Wednesday or Friday or Saturday night. By Sunday morning the church is restored to its former glory (thanks to a volunteer or two). The pop cans are placed in the recycling box and someone has steam cleaned the carpet for hours to remove the mashed in spaghetti. In fact, it’s like the youth were never there at all.
But what if we did things differently? Picture this: We are a few hot dogs short since jr. high school students helping to prep for Hot Dog Sunday started a food fight. The Pastor motions for the offering plate to be brought forward three times because neither teen usher wants to make the first move towards the front of the sanctuary. The youth room is far too loud while Adult Bible Study is going on next door. There are paint drippings on the parking lot because 15 youth showed up to graffiti an old car the night before. Their plan is to fill the car with donations for the local shelter.
Teen nights are loud, messy, funny and creative. What if same thing happened on Sunday morning? Would it be welcomed with open arms?